By February 22, 2021 About verity
John Zmolek, Verity CEO, has announced that he will retire on April 14, following the Annual Membership Meeting.
In April, John will be retiring after 31 years with Verity, first as a board member, and then in several different executive roles before being named CEO in 2014. Under John’s leadership, Verity Credit Union has set a powerful example of how the banking industry can demonstrate the values of true social and environmental responsibility, while vigorously working to improve the lives of people in the communities it serves.
As CEO, John targeted lending programs that have a positive impact on the environment, affordable housing and serving the underserved—such as loans for solar panels, electric or hybrid vehicle loans, first-time home-buyer and down-payment assistance mortgage loans, and loans to assist businesses and individuals through the pandemic. During John’s seven years as CEO, these loans have grown to more than 24% of Verity’s total portfolio with a goal of 40% by 2025.
John led Verity as it became one of only 11 financial institutions in the US and 65 in the world to join the Global Alliance for Banking on Values. In 2019, Verity, along with 27 other members of the Alliance, pledged to track and monitor the carbon impact of its loans and investments by 2022, to align the carbon footprint of its portfolio with Paris Agreement goals to keep global temperature increases under control.
“John led Verity with heart and vision,” said Zach Gose, Verity Board Chair. “Whether saving the Ballard P-Patch or partnering with solar contractors to create solar energy loans, his focus on social and environmental impacts inspired Verity to help communities dream boldly. We are thankful for his leadership and, while he may be retiring, we’re glad that John will continue to make a difference through community organizations such as Business Impact NW.”
Under Zmolek’s leadership, Verity membership grew significantly, as well. In the seven years prior to Zmolek taking over as CEO, membership grew by just 458, but in the seven years since he took the reins, membership has grown by 9,461 members. “I’ve always felt that membership growth was the most important indicator of whether we are living our mission. It demonstrates how we are enhancing lives by building trusted relationships with members and the community.”
Throughout his career, Zmolek has been a huge advocate of the credit union movement and of building strong communities. He has served on the board of the Northwest Credit Union Association for six years, including serving as chair of that board most recently. In addition, Zmolek was instrumental in leading a group of credit unions to develop an investment fund for low income housing. He currently serves on the board of YouthCare Seattle and will be stepping into the role of board chairman for Business Impact Northwest, where he has served on the board for over three years.
Zmolek will be stepping down from the CEO position after the Annual Membership Meeting on April 14. His successor has not yet been announced.